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Ones To Watch 2021

OnJam is a virtual venue for fans and artists to come together, and for artists to earn meaningful revenues in the process. It's a digital platform for musicians, artists (as well as managers, venues and festivals) to share their online concerts with audiences in high definition (up to 4K), top quality audio, and to monetise them through tickets, tips and extras. We've built bespoke ticket authentication technology, so access is one-click and secure: no log-ins or passwords required. Creators hosting their events on OnJam keep their own audience data (where those people opt in), the rights to their content, and earn 85% of ticket revenues. OnJam is free to use.

OnJam solves two major problems for creators: the ability to stay meaningfully connected with their global fans between gigs (not just on social media), and being able to meaningfully monetise online interactions without compromising on quality. For fans, we give them a way to get closer to their favourite artists with special events, a way to directly (financially) support them from anywhere in the world, and an easy way to discover new acts. We believe these issues have existed for a long time but venues shutting as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic revealed just how exposed most artists were.  

My co-founder and I formed the company in December 2020 and OnJam launched in February 2021. We were both building businesses throughout 2020 in this space so the platform really has the benefit of 12 months of tech development behind it. In our first 4 months of operations, we've enabled artists to earn over £45,000 and sold over 3400 tickets to fans in 40 countries around the world. And people are coming back: 23% of fans coming through the artists sign up to be OnJam members, which means they join our community and use OnJam to discover new concerts and new artists.

We're excited about our early traction and can't wait to support artists and venues post-pandemic too. We believe that the future of performance is hybrid, a mix of online and 'in real life'. This will allow music to be more accessible than ever before (there are always reasons people can't make it in-person to a venue, e.g. childcare issues, disability, living remotely). And we want to build the tools that allow all artists, not just the top 1%, to be able to financially sustain careers that span the digital and in-person worlds. We've already experimented with adding special VIP content (an extra few songs after the main gig, to watch on your phone or big screen at home after the main gig), exclusive Q&A with film director after a premiere screening. In late July, we have our first truly hybrid event: a small in-person audience and a much larger, global online audience. We're also partners of The F-List, which promotes gender equality on stage in the UK music industry, Feed (digital marketing) and GoToBeat (production company/events management).

We also produce a limited number of our own shows: we currently do this under the banner of Greengage, my previous company, which specialised in music, comedy and theatre for online formats. These originals have already won awards (e.g. Best Original Score, London Independent Film Awards), received 4* and 5* reviews from major publications, and lots of positive feedback from audiences all over the world. Some were produced in partnership with other companies, e.g. New European Ensemble (Netherlands) and Naiads Foundry (Isle of Wight) with guest directors such as Sophie Hunter.

OnJam connects the creative sector and technology sectors: I believe that our business, to work, has to really understand both sides. My co-founder Liam and I have complementary skillsets that span both worlds. Liam is a full-stack engineer who's led the build of streaming and ticketing and event technology for large corporates. Last year, he won an Innovate UK grant to build the predecessor business to OnJam. I'm a business strategy person with lots of experience producing films, working with musicians and arts organisations.

I'd love OnJam to be a CIC CreaTech One to Watch 2021 because it would help raise our profile at a moment where we're preparing for our first fundraise and ready to reach more artists and fans all over the UK and world. We've built and iterated the product, built strong fundamentals and are delivering against our business plan. We believe we can be a crucial part of building back the music and creative industry in a fairer, more connected way that benefits artists.

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